Page 27 - The Outdoor Showman APR-JUN 2019
P. 27

   The 2019 Bendigo Easter Festival drew huge crowds, The City of Greater Bendigo would like to take this opportunity to thank the Victorian Showmen’s Guild for its ongoing relationship and contribution to the success of Bendigo’s annual Easter Festival which was held in April and attracted record crowds.
Carnival Central transformed the city’s streets into a vibrant
and exciting drawcard with the thrill of the adrenaline-fuelled rides and the pot luck of the sideshow alley. It was a big hit with families and children of all ages who were keen to make the most of the carnival atmosphere during the Easter long weekend.
The Bendigo Easter Festival is the longest running community cultural festival in Australia and this year’s event was an extra special moment in history. Over 80,000 spectators attended the parade on Easter Sunday eager to see the arrival of Bendigo’s new Golden Dragon Dai Gum Loong, the city’s new dragon.
Dai Gum was welcomed by crowd favourite Imperial Dragon Sun Loong, who has been the lead dragon in the parade since 1970 and the remarkable Imperial Dragon Loong, the city’s oldest dragon. Golden Dragon Dai Gum Loong wooed crowds as he weaved through the parade with his stunning 125m-long body glittering with 7, 000 handmade scales in a magnificent display of Chinese culture and tradition.
Dai Gum Loong also represented a new era. The Bendigo Chinese Association understood the importance of equality as he was the first of Bendigo’s processional male dragons to be carried by women and as well as men. To introduce Dai Gum Loong, a special parade route was planned so that he could be shown offto the awaiting crowds. All three dragons met at the city’s iconic Alexandra Fountain before travelling along Pall Mall. The heritage Alexandra Fountain is where Loong met Sun Loong in 1970 for the first time so the decision to introduce Sun Loong to Dai Gum Loong was keeping up an important tradition.
Planning is now well underway for next year’s event which will be even bigger to celebrate the festival’s 150th anniversary.
To mark this significant milestone, the festival will revert back
to theoriginal name, Easter Fair, which was used when the traditional annual event started in 1871. It will be a four day event with some new attractions for the community to enjoy and many of the annual favourites, including the sights, sounds and entertainment provided by Carnival Central.
City of Greater Bendigo
 Thank you
A big thank you to all the Victorian Showmen’s Guild Members who attended the 2019 Bendigo Easter Festival. The Victorian Showmen’s Guild is delighted to report that the 2019 Carnival was a great success! A special mention to the City of Great Bendigo, Major Events team, Jacqueline Murphy and Terry Karamaloudis for their huge effort and support. The success of the event is also a testament to the dedication and efforts of the Victorian Showmen’s Guild Delegates. Thank you to the Bendigo Tafe for their support of the Festival, and their contribution as the major sponsor of the Festival. The Victorian Showmen’s Guild looks forward to working with the City of Greater Bendigo on the 2020 Festival, celebrating 150th Year of the Bendigo Easter Festival, which will see the Festival be held over 4 days.

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